Israel PM warns against Hamas-Fatah 'terror' cabinet

Benjamin Netanyahu (2nd from right) and cabinet members in Jerusalem (1 June 2014) Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu said the new Palestinian cabinet would "not bolster peace"

Israel has called on world leaders "not to rush to recognise" a new Palestinian transitional government involving Fatah and the Islamist group Hamas.

PM Benjamin Netanyahu said the unity cabinet, due to be formed on Monday, would "strengthen terror".

The Palestinian leadership has dismissed Israel's concerns, saying the government would comprise ministers without political affiliation.

Hamas and Fatah split violently in 2007 but announced a peace deal in April.

Fatah governs in parts of the Israeli-occupied West Bank while Hamas - which has refused to recognise Israel - holds sway in the Gaza Strip.

The Islamist movement is designated as a terrorist organisation by Israel, the US, the EU, Canada and Japan.

The main purpose of the unity government is to prepare for elections next year.

Boycott 'threat'

"Hamas is a terrorist organisation that calls for Israel's destruction, and the international community must not embrace it," Mr Netanyahu told his cabinet in Jerusalem on Sunday.

Israel froze US-brokered peace talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas after the unity deal was reached on 23 April.

Hamas militants in the southern Gaza Strip (29 May 2014) Hamas is viewed as a terrorist organisation by Israel, the EU and the US

Mr Abbas said earlier that Israel had warned him it would "boycott the government the moment it was announced".

"Israel wants to punish us for agreeing with Hamas on this government," he said, adding: "Each Israeli step will have a proper Palestinian response."

Mr Abbas said the new interim cabinet would recognise Israel and reject violence.

Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, a British-educated, politically independent academic, has been put in charge of forming the technocratic government.

The US said last month it was "disappointed" by the deal and warned it could seriously complicate peace efforts with Israel.

Fatah has historically been the dominant faction in the Palestinian nationalist movement, but Hamas won parliamentary elections in January 2006.

In early 2007, Fatah and Hamas agreed to form a coalition to end growing factional violence, but in June of that year Hamas seized Gaza by force and set up a rival government.

More on This Story

Israel and the Palestinians

More Middle East stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

  • Cartoon of women chatting on the metroChat wagon

    The interesting things you hear in a women-only carriage


  • Replica of a cargo boxSpecial delivery

    The man who posted himself to the other side of the world


  • Music scoreFinal score Watch

    Goodbye to NYC's last classical sheet music shop


  • Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton checks her Blackberry from a desk inside a C-17 military plane upon her departure from Malta, in the Mediterranean Sea, bound for Tripoli, Libya'Emailgate'

    Hillary gets a taste of scrutiny that lies ahead


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • Audi R8Best in show

    BBC Autos takes a look at 10 of the most eye-catching new cars at the 2015 Geneva motor show

Programmes

  • A cyborg cockroachClick Watch

    The cyborg cockroach – why has a computer been attached to this insect’s nervous system?

Try our new site and tell us what you think. Learn more
Take me there

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.